Interview with Hypo To Helio Books

What does your name, "Hypo To Helio Books," mean?
The first three words are Classical Greek for "under the sun." That's what we publish, everything under the sun—so far, we've got Adult fiction, Christian fiction, political fiction, and nonfiction. What we look for is writing that is well-written but quirky. New York City publishers hate "quirky."
How do you approach cover design?
I avoid stock-photo pictures, even when I can admire the beauty of the model and the skill of the photographer. I prefer to use computer-generated render art for the cover, because then I can exactly show characters and scenes, for a lot cheaper than hiring an oil painter to create the cover. If the cover can't be rendered by computer (such as for historical fiction), then I use public-domain art.
When did you first start writing?
The first story I wrote, I was six or seven; I illustrated my story with crayons. I wrote a story on my mother's typewriter when I was nine or ten.
What motivated you to become an indie author and publisher?
I am an author because I have stories I must tell. I'm a publisher because I want to tell my stories, and my friends' stories, without having to grovel before gatekeepers.
What is the greatest joy of publishing for you?
Taking a story written by me or someone else, editing it to make it better, creating an attractive cover for it, writing an attractive sales blurb for it, and telling the author some time later, "You and I both made money this month."
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
I was six or seven. I wrote a story about a red sailboat that magically turned blue. (Or maybe it was the other way around.) I illustrated it with crayon.
What is your writing process?
Usually I start with the beginning of the story and the end of the story, then figure out a series of plot steps to get me from beginning to end. As I'm writing the story, I ask myself, "X has just happened to the hero. How does this change him?" So with me, character change happens naturally. As for description, I try to avoid it, except when absolutely necessary.
What do you read for pleasure?
Science fiction, fantasy, and alt-history.
Published 2014-10-24.
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